This might be a bit contentious, but it has to be said: Herpes might just be an excuse. Where might you be using it as an excuse in your life? An excuse to not find the lover you deserve? An excuse to not be happy? An excuse to not live your life now? Sometimes we allow excuses to pull us away from living the life we truly think we deserve but have somehow convinced ourselves that we don’t.
It’s the ultimate self-sabotage. More >
Really, why do we feel the need to segregate ourselves to STD-only sites anyway? Who are we to minimize our chances of finding our fish in the sea by limiting our sea to only herpes fish? How presumptuous are we to make the decision for our potential lovers by taking ourselves out of the general dating population? Let them make that decision for themselves about whether or not they want to be with you (just the same decision that you’ll make if you want to be with them, by the way). Let’s not pre-reject ourselves, shall we? More >
Is it possible to get genital HSV 1 herpes from oral sex?
Yes! Oral herpes (also known as fever blisters or cold sores, HSV-1) have been thought to only show up on the lips, but studies have shown that passing oral herpes from mouth to genitals is easier than had been assumed. Women are more likely than men to get genital herpes from oral sex because of the simple makeup of a woman’s anatomy (more mucous membranes). More >
We as the herpes community have two parts to disclosing that we have herpes to potential partners. After we feel the time is right to disclose, the next part is how we disclose. Half of the disclosure we have complete control over. The other half we don’t. More >
Join us on the herpes forum discussion boards where you are free to talk about anything you like — yes, ANYTHING. Share your story, share herpes facts, share yourself and support others in doing the same.
You know, herpes shame is a sneaky thing: it causes us to isolate, to not talk about it out of fear of being rejected, fear of being judged … but the more we keep it to ourselves, the bigger the shame gets. And sharing what we feel ashamed about actually decreases shame. Posting on the herpes forums gets it out of your head and out into the world. By sharing, we all realize we’re not alone in this; and we help others really get that, too. You can be as anonymous as you would like, but whatever you do, don’t keep it to yourself! Even simply saying “I have herpes” and letting out how you feel about it can be such a freeing feeling. Share it with us and let us be there for you.
“Connection is why we are all here.” (3:12) What Brené Brown is talking about is so universal, yet beautifully applies to those struggling with the shame that herpes can bring. Shame (fear of disconnection) is what unravels connection … something we all live for. And what is shame? She goes on to explain that shame is the part of us that says “is there something about me that if other people know it or see it, that I won’t be worthy of connection?” (4:41) And the power of keeping shame hidden only strengthens it: “No one wants to talk about [shame] and the less you talk about it, the more you have it.” (4:57) More >
What you have — whether it’s a new car, a mansion … or herpes — is much less important than who you are … underneath it all. Your core values (integrity, honesty, vulnerability, connection, truth, love, humor, creativity, and on and on) speak volumes more than whatever “stuff” happens to be orbiting around you. More >
I recently came across a great video with celebrities talking about the stigma associated with mental illness and disease. Interesting how a few of the points made in the film can easily apply to herpes and the stigma it has in our culture. When you watch this film, try mentally substituting “herpes” or “sexual disease” in for when mental disease is mentioned. There are many parallels. More >
“I think I have herpes.” All of the sudden, a Hazmat team rushes in with full bio-hazard suits and gas masks, they gas the evil herpes offender, then swiftly drag her out of the house (see “live and love: let’s talk about HSV” video below) … It’s actually humorous when put into this kind of a context, but isn’t this how most people feel when they first get herpes? At first, there’s an overwhelming feeling of being contagious and dirty … a sneaky suspicion that quarantine may be necessary for the sake of saving the future of humanity. We need to start getting real with our priorities. The harsh stigma of genital herpes grossly misrepresents herpes itself. More >
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On the Savage Love podcast, Dan Savage talks talks about sex in a no-holds-barred way. On episode 195, he has a fun time with Dr. Anna Kaminski from Planned Parenthood talking about a number of sex-related topics, a major one they focus on is herpes (starting in the audio at 12:02). It’s a funny and informative discussion ultimately breaking it down to the fact that herpes is simply “not a big deal.” More >